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Comments

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"BadUSB" Exploit Makes Devices Turn "Evil"

SydShamino Re:Superglue all USB slots (193 comments)

Except the ones for your keyboard and mouse, right? Except your keyboard broke, so just plug in this new one you got from Dell via NSAUSPS.

yesterday
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A 24-Year-Old Scammed Apple 42 Times In 16 Different States

SydShamino Re:$7142.85 (412 comments)

A few laptops gets there.

The scam works better with a large purchase. Banks routinely deny transaction over some amount, forcing the retailer to call for an override code. Apparently the denial for "bad account" look identical to the one for "valid account, but that amount is high so give us a call, okay?"

If his card was denied for a $500 purchase, he'd need to convince the retailer that it was a bug in the system, not just a routine check for a large purchase.

2 days ago
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Suddenly Visible: Illicit Drugs As Part of Silicon Valley Culture

SydShamino Re:Ban caffeine! (506 comments)

I agree with the definition of pot as a gateway drug only because it is mostly harmless but illegal. Anyone taking it is already breaking the law, so why not do so with something else?

Having the law aligned with risk breaks the "gateway" argument; I agree with you that caffeine and alcohol etc. called gateways is ridiculous.

3 days ago
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Netflix Reduces Physical-Disc Processing, Keeps Prices the Same

SydShamino Re:Time will tell (353 comments)

Yeah, I'm about to cancel as well. What's left on my list isn't awesome, and I can get a lot from the local libraries if I care that much.

about two weeks ago
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How One School District Handled Rolling Out 20,000 iPads

SydShamino Re:Completly Blindsided. (285 comments)

From the article, it sounds like CVUSD isn't an independent organization. The school districts where you live might be structured differently, so this might not be apparent to you.

In Texas, school districts are independent entities (ISDs) with their own taxing authority. The ISD owns the land and runs the schools. Board members are elected.

In Louisiana, where I lived for a while a long time ago, the parishes run the schools. There's a school board, whose members are IIRC appointed by the county commissioners, good ol' boy style. The schools have no tax authority and have to go to the parish for money or infrastructure requests.

It sounds like California organizes school districts more like the latter than the former, though a given county might have multiple districts instead of just one as in Louisiana parishes. The article describes the county limiting bandwidth use by CVUSD, something impossible to happen in Texas as the county has no authority over the ISD.

Likewise, and to your point, the article says that the county encouraged CVUSD to deploy the iPads, and from that CVUSD assumed the county had enough bandwidth to manage this. I guess that means the county is the district's ISP, and the district isn't allowed to change ISPs or contract with a private ISP. And the county IT maybe didn't know the district was going to do this, so they couldn't point it out and try to get a bigger pipe at that level. So they didn't see the problem because bureaucracy.

about two weeks ago
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How One School District Handled Rolling Out 20,000 iPads

SydShamino Re:I still can't for the life of me (285 comments)

Parents being more involved in their kids' education is the educational silver bullet. If this is what it takes to make that possible in this district, so be it.

about two weeks ago
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How One School District Handled Rolling Out 20,000 iPads

SydShamino Re:I still can't for the life of me (285 comments)

I presume they want something with better educational software support and higher hardware reliability. As is pointed out just a few Slashdot articles below, low-end Android stuff is crap.

about two weeks ago
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How One School District Handled Rolling Out 20,000 iPads

SydShamino Re:Expensive? (285 comments)

>> Your proposal then requires the school boards to fund such productions for every topic of every grade - in some cases multiple levels of one subject for each grade.

No it doesn't. It requires them (the thousands of them) to fund one topic at one level in one grade, then see what happens after that. Maybe don't start with social studies which might be obsolete in five years, and instead start with fourth grade multiplication which won't change in the next 50. Then go from there at an affordable pace.

about two weeks ago
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Chicago Red Light Cameras Issue Thousands of Bogus Tickets

SydShamino Re:Looks ok to me (229 comments)

In Texas a moving violation 24 miles over the speed limit is a traffic violation. It is neither a misdemeanor nor a felony and therefore not a crime. You cannot be arrested. Speeding 25 or more above the limit is a misdemeanor. Failure to pay a fine may be a crime, but the moving violation itself is not.

about two weeks ago
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US House Passes Permanent Ban On Internet Access Taxes

SydShamino Re:November? (148 comments)

It's also about internet-only services.

Texas has such a tax, for example. When my wife and I played World of Warcraft, we had to pay the monthly (or quarterly, whatever) subscription charge and a tax on the service. People in most other states don't have to, because Texas has had its take on internet-only services like that from before 1998.

Before WoW, my wife and I played EverQuest, except she started her account when we still lived in Tennessee. Even after we moved to Texas, her account was never subjected to the Texas tax, even though mine was and both accounts were (now) on the same address and credit card. Oops, I guess EA's system to collect taxes was flawed. It wasn't until about when we cancelled that I finally realized this was why we were being charged different amounts.

about two weeks ago
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French Blogger Fined For Negative Restaurant Review

SydShamino Re:I wanted to write about this place (424 comments)

Tipping is circular logic. Because some jobs traditionally receive tips, the law is written to say that employers need only pay those employees like $3 an hour base line, with the rest of their income up to minimum wage being made up of tips.

Thus, because they pay their employees less, they can charge you less for the food (supposedly). Thus, the prices in the menu are based on the assumption that you and everyone else will tip.

If no one tips, the owner has to make up the difference to minimum wage, and to do that he'll have to raise prices. So you end up paying for the tip anyway.

This circular logic breaks down at places like Outback Steakhouse, where they famously pay their hostesses and (bus boys IIRC?) less than minimum wage, but don't allow them to accept tips, then argued in court that because the "jobs" traditionally allow tips overall, they qualify as tip jobs even if it's not allowed at their stores. (Then they do forced tip share with the servers, so that the servers are forced to share their income not just amongst themselves but with the hostesses and bus boys as well.) I don't eat there any more, but if you do, be sure to tip your server in cash so they can pocket it and avoid this crap.

about two weeks ago
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Time Warner Turns Down Takeover Bid From Rupert Murdoch

SydShamino Re:Comcast first (70 comments)

They will still have a monopoly in my area regardless of who owns what.

This is off topic, since TWC isn't the same company as TWI, but...

They keep talking about the "lack of overlap" in their markets, but that's bogus. Comcast and TWC overlap in the "negotiating with content providers" market. The larger the company, the harder they can negotiate against the cable channel providers not already owned by one of them. They might say this will yield lower prices for consumers, but you and I know that's total bullshit.

What it actually means is that they'll either drop channels that won't negotiate, and focus more on providing only channels they create, or the third-party channels they keep will need more ads - more in-show ads - and cheaper shows (reality TV) to make up the difference in revenue they lost.

I don't like the content providers either (give me a la carte or give me death!) but TWC and Comcast at two separate negotiating tables is much better for consumers than a merged monolith at one table.

about two weeks ago
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Economist: File Sharing's Impact On Movies Is Modest At Most

SydShamino Re:Value for money (214 comments)

Alamo food isn't really that good any more. They seriously buggered up their menu a year+ back, and basically offer just burgers and (small) pizzas now. I think the owners are more focused on their Drafthouse Films brand and being a distributor now rather than stay focused on the perfect movie experience.

It's still a good place to see a film that you can't see anywhere else, but if you're seeing a major release, even Austin has theaters with a better experience - Flix Brewhouse for one.

about two weeks ago
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Today In Year-based Computer Errors: Draft Notices Sent To Men Born In the 1800s

SydShamino Re:My daughter (205 comments)

Why assume 2200? In my experience, more things now rely on two digit years, not less. If a bad programmer today is coding something that never deals with historical records, only future dates, what is the incentive to be diligent about using four digit years? We've already established he's not very good, and if he even thought about, it, he probably assumes he won't be working 86 years from now when someone notices his bug.

about three weeks ago
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DC Entertainment Won't Allow Superman Logo On Murdered Child's Memorial Statue

SydShamino Re:LOOK! (249 comments)

It's a bird! It's a plane! It's a... cease and desist order. :(

C&D Comics?

about three weeks ago
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Netflix Is Looking To Pay Someone To Watch Netflix All Day

SydShamino Re:Netflix rating engine sucks (86 comments)

Sure, but it's so much worse now than it was then. I was trying to add old Doctor Who to my DVD queue. With each add it pops up other recommendations, but a lot of the time none of them were Doctor Who episodes!

It seems to recommend obscure crap when I'm adding a popular/cult item, and it recommends Frozen or some other recent big budget thing when I'm adding older obscure stuff. I have to think their algorithms have been messed with by their marketing and suits to push things their distribution contracts require them to, not what their users actually want.

about three weeks ago
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Study: Global Warming Solvable If Fossil Fuel Subsidies Given To Clean Energy

SydShamino Re:Wait until those lamers find out... (385 comments)

If you are using concentrated solar thermal instead of photovoltaics, the molten slag is your battery. Use both so you get PV in the morning when your salt is cool. Winds are higher in the morning too. And of course a safe thorium reactor for baseline never hurt anybody.

about three weeks ago
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Site of 1976 "Atomic Man" Accident To Be Cleaned

SydShamino Re:Hmm (299 comments)

Yeah, because he survived organ failure, cataracts, and four heart attacks in four months along with daily baths, shaves, and medicine for months to expel the radiation, it must be safe to just knock it down with a wrecking ball or maybe dynamite.

about a month ago
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30% of Americans Aren't Ready For the Next Generation of Technology

SydShamino Re:30% lol (191 comments)

84% of statistics are made up on the spot. 79% of people know THAT!

Wow, that high? I would have expected it to be lower.

about a month ago

Submissions

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Exploiting Cashier-as-a-Service Providers

SydShamino SydShamino writes  |  more than 3 years ago

SydShamino (547793) writes "Researches at Indiana University and Microsoft found and exploited flaws in the communication between web stores and third-party cashiers (Amazon Payments, PayPal, Google Checkout) to order items for free, or at prices of their choice. "We believe that it is difficult to ensure the security of a CaaS-based checkout system in the presence of a malicious shopper" said the study co-author. The identified flaws have been reported and fixed, but they feel that more, similar flaws are likely given the complicated nature of many web-based transactions."
Link to Original Source
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New British Government Vows to Strengthen Liberty

SydShamino SydShamino writes  |  more than 4 years ago

SydShamino (547793) writes "Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg of the new British coalition government has announced a litany of proposed reforms designed to strengthen individual liberty and privacy, on several topics often championed among Slashdot readers, including: elimination of unnecessary laws to stop making "criminals out of ordinary people", elimination of the national identity card program and new biometric passports, removal of restrictions on the right to peacefully protest, restrictions on schools taking fingerprints without permission, curtailing of anti-terrorism legislation that allowed for detention of subjects for extended periods without charge, replacement of the "first-past-the-post" election system with an instant-runoff system, new regulation of the use of surveillance cameras. "Britain must not be a country where our children grow up so used to their liberty being infringed that they expect it without question," Clegg said.

The Conservative Party of the governing coalition is said to be less receptive to these reforms; hopefully some of them can be enacted before the coalition fails."

Link to Original Source
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Blue M&Ms can lessen the damage from spinal in

SydShamino SydShamino writes  |  about 5 years ago

SydShamino (547793) writes "Researchers at the University of Rochester Medical Center have found that the dye used in blue M&Ms and other foods can, when given to a patient shortly after a spinal injury, minimizing secondary damage caused by the body when it kills off nearby healthy cells. Given that 85% of spinal injury patients are currently untreated (and some doctors don't trust the treatment given to the other 15%), a relatively safe treatment like this could help preserve some function for thousands of patients. The best part? In lab rats the subjects given the treatment turn blue."
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SydShamino SydShamino writes  |  more than 7 years ago

SydShamino (547793) writes "CNN, the Associated Press and others are reporting that an independent audit of the FBI revealed "serious misuse" of power to acquire private information granted in the Patriot Act. FBI Director Robert Mueller has accepted responsibility for problems and says they are being corrected, but Congress has already called for hearings. There's no word yet on criminal charges against anyone in the FBI who might have broken the law."

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